Authors Notes: Gregory visits Catherine in the nurse's office, but will this shed any more light on the problem with James...?
James the terrible.
Chapter Two - Visiting the nurse.
It had taken a total of approximately six hours to get the lobby desk back into a state of being neat and tidy, two hours had been spent gathering things up into seperate piles, another two hours were spent reorganizing books and papers onto the right shelves, as well as many other little knick-knacks ( two of those things being a dried frog in a bottle and a skull) that Gregory had actually forgot all about; and finding some books to keep on the desk to read whenever he became bored.
The last two hours had then consisted of the old mouse trying to locate the guest book that he usually kept on the desk to make notes of the guests whenever they arrived at the hotel.
Gregory's search had taken him from the obvious place in the hotel's lobby, to more obscure places like the hotel's garden...but his searches had ultimately turned up nothing; it was only when he'd gone to have a quick lay-down in the manager's room, had he come across a certain misplaced book laying in the middle of a mouse trap...once again, this was another sign that James had been here.
The old mouse knew what would happen if he was to reach for the guest book and so he hesistated for a while...of course he couldn't hesistate forever, that book needed to be back on the desk where it belonged and just leaving it there meant that anyone could read what was in there!
Of course Gregory could of just left it there so that someone else had the misfortune of getting their hand snapped on, but he didn't want to risk private thoughts about some of the guests being made public...so in the end, he had took a deep intake of breath and reached out for the guest book; the old mouse then winced in pain when the claws of the metal trap clamped down on his hand and tried as best he could to stifle a yelp.
At last, after getting things on his desk back in the order that they should of been in; the hotel manager finally began making his way to the nurse's office in order to see Catherine..as well as perhaps getting his injured hand seen to.
' I can only hope that she's not seeing anyone at the moment...' Gregory thought to himself as he gazed at the candle that he often carried around to light his way through the building, otherwise ignoring the eerie shadows that the light of the flames often cast onto the walls at either side of him.
' When she gets into her work, she really gets into it...it gives me the shivers just thinking about it!'
Approaching the nurse's office, Gregory hesistated at the door for a few minutes before slowly opening it.
" Catherine? I hope that you don't mind my intrusion, my dear. But I need to talk to you..." was all he said as he gradually went into the room.
He found the lizard nurse sitting at her desk, she appeared to be gazing dreamily at a vial of what he suspected was fresh blood.
' Ahh...looks like she's just finished a work-shift' Gregory's thoughts echoed inside his head as he spoke up again, unaware if the young woman had heard him the first time.
" Out of all the blood I have ever collected, human blood still continues to be the most sweetest..." Catherine softly murmured to herself as she still gazed at the crimson liquid within the vial, only to realise that she wasn't alone in the room when she heard Gregory's voice from behind her; the young woman eyes widened as she looked around and just saw the old mouse standing there with a raised brow.
" Oh! Why hello there Gregory, I didn't see you there" was all she managed to say as she quickly placed the vial of blood back into the vial holder (so that it could be alongside many other blood samples) and just tried to look composed.
" I just get so caught up in my work sometimes..."
" I can see that, my dear" Gregory replied as he did his best not to chuckle at Catherine's expense...although it was hard not to.
" You haven't been overdoing it again have you?" was the first thing that he asked her, of course he knew that she probably had...but deep down, this blood addiction of hers did worry him at times; not that he'd ever tell her that of course.
" You know that we've talked about this before"
Catherine just giggled in that usual tone of hers and merely shrugged her shoulders in response.
" I know that I shouldn't, but I just can't resist" at that moment her tail just seemed to wag to and fro as she thought about her latest patient.
" Oh, but you should of seen the patient, that man had such gorgeous veins and a handsome face...I just couldn't help myself!"
That only got Gregory to shake his head in what appeared to be dismay...yet as he looked up to Catherine, a sly smirk surfaced on his face.
" Yes, yes; I'm sure that he did, Catherine...but I do hope that you didn't take too much, remember what I always say about those new human guests?"
That only got Catherine to nod in response.
" I know, I know...you like to have them neither dead, neither alive; just perfectly stuck inbetween" that smile on her face became slightly wider as she narrowed her eyes slyly.
" All the more fun for the others, right?"
At that point, Gregory just laughed in reply to that; only for Catherine to join in with the laughing too...had anyone been walking past the office at that time, they would of thought that the nurse's room was an asylum rather than a place to go for medical check-up's.
Their laughing echoed in the dreary corridor, catching off-guard anyone who was out and about in the building at that particular time...yet the laughing of the manager and nurse finally quietened down when Gregory finally found the breath to talk again.
" You, you could say that, my dear..." Gregory paused to stifle another chuckle, obviously that statement from Catherine had tickled him quite a bit.
" Yes, all the more fun for the others" yet that smile of his soon became a frown as he folded his arms.
" But I'm being serious when I say that you should becareful not to overdo it, at the end of the day...you are still the hotel nurse and you need to help others rather than just yourself"
After that, Catherine's smile faded and she just gave a solemn nod in response.
" Of course, Gregory..." although she just glanced at her collection of syringes that were hanging on the wall and just sighed sadly.
" It's not easy to control though...I mean, once I'm holding onto a needle...I-I just can't help it, it's like something tells me, urges me to take the blood!" she confessed...however, the young lizard woman then decided to change the topic; taking on a more professional composture as she turned away from Gregory's gaze.
" Anyway, what brings you to the nurse's office Gregory? Did you have a fountain of a nosebleed again, of course if you did...you know what my prescription is for that..."
' Now why on earth would I get a noseblee-' Gregory's thoughts stopped in their tracks when the old mouse suddenly realised what Catherine meant and just threw his arms up into the air out of retaliation.
" No I didn't! And for your information, I haven't felt like reading that magazine for a long time now!" he yelled defensively...only to suddenly smile slyly and just put on a mock-innocent tone.
" But I suppose that you have...since those human children said that they'd found it in your room"
Now it was Catherine's turn to retailiate as the lizard gave an annoyed hiss before turning around on her chair to face Gregory fully.
" What?! As if I'd like to read a tasteless book like that!" she snapped sharply...of course the tell-tale flush of red on her cheeks only got the old mouse to laugh even more, surely a little bit more teasing wouldn't hurt her.
" Well of course you would, afterall...those cheap romance novels probably aren't enough for you!" came Gregory's response...only this time his laughing turned into a startled yelp when Catherine came lunging at him with a syringe at the ready.
" Catherine don't! I didn't mean it, it was just a joke!" he called out pleadingly as he narrowly dodged getting a rather sharp needle in his head.
" You could never understand the feelings of a woman!" Catherine simply yelled back as she started to chase him around the nurse's office...it surprised her really, for an old man; Gregory could run rather fast.
" Don't run from me, come and take your medicine like a man!"
From outside the office, thuds and crashes could be heard from within the room as Gregory dodged the needle ( and Catherine's wrath) at every chance he got; which often resulted in Catherine slamming into something or her syringe knocking something over.
Such a commotion attracted the attentions of passersby, particularly Mummy Papa ( on his evening run) and Judgement Boy ( doing his judgement training) as they went past the room, yet a lot of them resisted the urge to peek into the room and see what was going on; they had known Catherine long enough to know how dangerous she was with that needle!
At one point Catherine crashed into a wall, to which Gregory took the chance to run behind the curtain and scamper under the only hospital bed in the room.
It was then that he tried to catch as much breath as he could; in the meantime, the old mouse could feel his heart beating like crazy...this was definately a bit of excercise for him but he wasn't enjoying it one bit!
' Geez, Catherine needs to learn how to lighten up if she can't take just one little joke' he thought to himself as he looked fearfully out from under the bed.
' Did she honestly think that I was being serious?!'
Soon Catherine was up and about again, crashing into that wall hadn't made her mood any better and after flickering her tongue at the air of the room, she smirked and glanced slyly at the bed that Gregory was hiding under...oh how being a lizard had it's benefits sometimes.
A small evil chuckle emanated from the nurse's throat as she slowly began to walk towards the bed.
" Oh my...I wonder where Gregory could of gone?" she said outloud, trying to make her tone seem as oblivious to the manager's wherabouts as possible...at least at the moment.
" Could he be here...?"
In a fast motion, Catherine then thrust the needle down into the bed; it's sharp metal point penetrated the blanket, mattress, bed base and even the floor!
Gregory's sensitive ears had picked up the sound of ripping, splintering and cracking when the needle-point had ripped through the aforementioned materials; only for the mouse himself to stifle a panicked yelp when the needle-point landed right in front of where he was.
Yet just as soon as it had came down, the needle-point then went back up as Catherine held up the syringe again.
" Or could he be here?" and once again, the needle was sharply thrust back down into the bed.
This time the needle's point landed right behind Gregory, beads of sweat had already started to roll down the manager's face as the needle-point went up again; by this time, it was safe to say that Gregory didn't want to find out where the needle-point would land this time and shot out from under the bed like a ball from a cannon.
After that, Gregory slid under the curtain, across the black and white checkered floor and ended up colliding with the desk.
Falling backwards onto the floor, Gregory just looked on helplessly as Catherine approached him.
It was at this time that his conscience was telling him that this was his chance to take control of the situation, be assertive for once...Gregory was the full-blooded son of Gregory Mama afterall; and the owner of this hotel, he should of had the authoritive power to tell those who worked for him what they could or could not do, just how difficult could that be?
Finding mental strength in that possibility, Gregory put on a stern expression and looked Catherine in the eyes; amethyst orbs meeting rose-pinks.
" Catherine stop this nonsense right now!" he demanded.
" Don't forget that this is my hotel!"
" That may be true..." Catherine responded thoughtfully, but then smirked psychotically as she rose her needle ready for the attack once again and this time, she knew that she wasn't going to miss.
" But this is my office!"
Within a few seconds, the entire corridor soon echoed the sound of Gregory's shrill screams...apparently the hotel manager was going to end up staying in the nurse's office a little longer than what he'd originally intended.
To be continued.
Gregory and Catherine belong to Naomi Iwata, Milky Cartoon.